– 1 step, 1 rule and 1 exercise on building self-confidence with Style –
Why not start with Coco Chanel saying: “Fashion fades, while style is eternal”?
With these words began my journey towards Personal Style and Image Coaching area. As time went by I have met many people seeking to act and do things according to their personal style; more and more people who start refusing their status of just being a part of the “system” (no matter what that area was); who want to make their voice heard and who struggle to get out of the herd. I was one of them and I have realized it was no coincidence in meeting them.
That is why I was so motivated by this matter and that’s why I wanted to make a contribution in this field.
It all starts with realizing that style is born from our self-awareness. “I” is in the center of our own universe. We mark everything around us (home, relationships, profession, body, wardrobe, spirituality, creativity) with our personal style stamp. When it comes to style and confidence, we need to learn how to perfectly tone with one another.
Confidence has nothing to do with esthetics, while it depends entirely on attitude. Inspiration represents a personal experience linked to our personality and interior universe and is fed by our fantasy and our will of becoming SOMEONE.
The way we dress represents a visit card that you offer to the whole world, especially nowadays, when human contacts happen so quickly; “Fashion represents an instantaneous language”- Miuccia Prada. Even though this is true, it is more important to be aware of the fact that fashion can be bought, while style is a gift we receive when we’re born.
Style is personal… there is no room for fashion trends or seasons. Style comes from within and we need to discover our soul and learn how to trust ourselves, before presenting our image to the outside world.
So… the first step to take in order to outline our style is to envision our self-esteem and self-confidence.
No doubt that it’s great to have in hand all styling secrets (colors that flatter your hair and skin color; your silhouette type; tailoring types), but even more important is to master the skill of showing your personality through every outfit, every smile, through your attitude.
In order to start consolidating your self-confidence through style, the following questions will help: What message does this outfit send to others? How am I feeling today? Which is the center item in my outfit? (For example, accessories can tell a lot of your state of mind. The eyes might be the window to the soul, but as, Rachel Zoe says, “jewelry, shoes, belt and handbag reveal where we are – or where we’d like to be”) Why do I choose an item and not the other? What type of outfit do I tend to choose when I have a low energy level? What colors or items succeed to make me feel good when I wear them? If I were to describe myself in only three-four words, what would those be? How can I outline my personal style according to these words?
Usually, I don’t like or follow many rules, but one of those I love is this: Always wear what truly represents you!
Style offers countless opportunities, opens doors locked, until then, and gives you the chance to bring one part of your personality into the light, in a unique way.
Some of our core values can be in contradiction, likewise the apparel elements can be totally antagonist. Although we might think that things that are so different, under no circumstance can be “matched”, style represents exactly these imperfect symbiosis and unusual juxtapositions. So, “Don’t be afraid!” Mix and match, take a look in the mirror, and if you feel great, than you don’t have to worry about anything.
You should never complain that your skirt is too short, your dress is too tight, or your heels to high. You should know your shape, what suites you and what matches your lifestyle. If you don’t feel comfortable in a large sweater, skin-tight jeans, and killer heels, go home and change!
The wheel of Style
In my opinion, at the beginning of a coaching process, the Wheel of Life exercise represents a great tool for the client, in order to gain perspective about his current status.
When it comes to Style Coaching, there is the same need for the client to evaluate and gain perspective on his/hers current style situation. That’s why I have transformed the initial exercise into Wheel of Style. There are six major sections that one can address from the point of view of personal style. The exercise begins by grading each section (according to the perception the client has on that matter at the present moment; shortly, ask yourself What grade would I give myself at wardrobe section, from the point of view of personal style? and then writing down all the actions, barriers, goals and priorities linked to that section of the wheel and according to the grade given.
One important difference between this exercise and the Wheel of Life is the following: while the last one is used as a point of departure in the coaching journey, the Wheel of Style would be analyzed after the client has discovered his/her personal style.
Instead of conclusion, I would like to share with you a quotation on style that I love: “Feminine refinement is the belief in your own strength. It is almost impossible to create and follow your own path, if you don’t believe in yourself. You need to have faith not only in your style, but also in your beliefs; to have an indescribable gift that someone can recognize instantly…” – D. Versace.
By: Irina Toma